The field of media is run by deadlines. Advertising professionals have to brainstorm creative concepts and deliver quality work in a limited span of time. At times, they face a ‘writer’s block’. Today, journalists cannot afford to be lapdogs. They have to be watchdogs and keep the newsroom brimming with stories. In such a competitive scenario and amidst erratic schedules, it is safe to say that media professionals are subjected to high levels of friction.

No, it isn’t convenient to succumb to difficult situations and give up. Stress management hence becomes crucial for media aspirants, to save the day. At SVKM’s Harkisan Mehta Institute of Media, Research & Analysis, we prepare our students for real life situations. Hence, we invited one of India’s finest trauma specialists to interact with our students.

Seema-Hingorani

She is the youngest psychologist in Mumbai, regularly quoted for her expertise and elucidation in prominent newspapers and magazines like Times of India. She has also been an Official Psycho Analyst for Femina Miss India. Applauded internationally for her research papers, she was one of the trauma experts who were recently sent to Kashmir to treat 5000 flood survivors.

Her clinic at Bandra, Mumbai is frequented by Bollywood celebrities to vent their woes and one might have to wait for months to get an appointment with her. You are wondering who she is. Quoted in more than 2500 articles across media, Dr. Seema Hingorrany was gracious enough to address our students on stress management on special request, as we at HMMRA believe in the holistic development of every student.

The seminar commenced with a short exercise, where Dr. Hingorrany asked the students to close their eyes and ponder on their top three worries for the day.  What was achieved from this exercise was a true realisation of what is bothering one from within. “The first step to tackle stress is being mindful of your stress”, says Dr. Seema Hingorrany. As soon as you notice a physical or emotional stress, you must acknowledge and accept it. She expounded on the need to practice this exercise daily on rising, so as to be aware of our problems and thereby improve problem solving. In practicing mindfulness, we learn to become aware of our thoughts, emotions, feelings, and behaviour so we can interrupt stress cycles before they increase out of control.

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Next, she introduced the students to the technique of compartmentalisation. It includes dividing up the tasks one needs to do and the corresponding stresses, so that they can’t slam into one another. Just as one keeps the peas away from mashed potatoes on the plate, one must focus only on the one thing in front of them, whether it’s the peas or the potatoes. For example, stress arising from family and home must be left at the door and not carried as baggage to the workplace. In this way, one can prioritise situational needs and thereby troubleshoot stress. One must compartmentalise, isolate and focus on different issues separately. Remind yourself that at a given moment, what your role and priority are. “It teaches you how to close doors in your brain. Shut tight. Not to be opened until the appropriate time”, says Dr. Seema Hingorrany, regarding boundary management as an important technique for media professionals, as they cannot afford worries to bother them at work. It may deter them from being optimally productive.

Some students expressed their concerns about stress before a job interview. Dr. Hingorrany encouraged the students to be confident and practice positive visualisation and shared that eating dark chocolate before an interview helps relieve stress. She enlightened the students on including Vitamins B12, D3 in their diet as these play an important role in curbing stress. This was followed by a question-answer session, where Dr. Hingorrany gave her expert advice to the students. The seminar received unanimous appreciation from all the students.

At SVKM’s Harkisan Mehta Institute of Media, Research & Analysis, we regularly organise seminars, master-classes and workshops. Apart from professional skill-building master-classes, we also conduct life lesson imparting sessions in the interest of our students. Log on to www.hmmra.ac.in to learn more.

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